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I have been scammed by a contractor and Upwork is not helping me.

Active Member
Wendy M Member Since: Jun 11, 2019
1 of 24

I hire a contractor in 2017 to do a little work on my website.  I have not had any communication with him since 2017. I have not hired him to do any more work of any kind.  Out of the blue two weeks ago, he submitted a fraudulent work diary and I was charged.  The work inside of the work diary CLEARLY is not mine and has nothing to do with my company.  My company sells tents and the work inside the work diary is in another language and is promoting cameras. I immediately filed a dispute.  Upwork went ahead and paid him anyway. Upwork basically said they don't monitor the "quality" of the work.  He filed another fraudulent work diary this week.  I have reached out to Upwork many times about this.  I have done everything I am supposed to do by requesting a refund and filing disputes.  Upwork needs to protect me and refund my money from this con artist.  I need help!!

Bojan S Moderator Member Since: Mar 9, 2018
2 of 24

Sorry to hear about your experience, Wendy.


It looks like you have an open ticket with our team about this case. Please consider following up on your ticket and kindly communicate with our team through that ticket if you have any questions, in order to keep all the information in one place.


Thank you!



~ Bojan
Active Member
Wendy M Member Since: Jun 11, 2019
3 of 24
I have two tickets for the same contractor. The first one is *closed *and
the *contractor was paid and I was charged*. Even though I immediately
informed Upwork the work inside of the diary is not for my company and I
have not hired this contractor to do any work since 2017. The contractor
is currently suspended and his profile no longer exists. I need help to
get my money back.
Active Member
Wendy M Member Since: Jun 11, 2019
4 of 24

image (6).pngSo.....Brian here is where things are at as of right now.  I did as you asked and tried working with the support team on these fraudulent charges through and refund request disputes.  The contractor was paid for the fraudulent hours anyway.  When I contact the support team on the phone now, the support person has a look at the file and replies "this is very disappointing and shameful" how this was handled".   However, there is nothing we can do.  Since all of this "shame" and "disappointment" has not catapulted any of the multiple support employees I have reached out to one the phone, through chat, filings of disputes and request for refunds I had no choice but to file disputes with my credit card company. No One will help me they all "pass the buck once they realize Upwork made the mistake. Please see below my current email exchanges with the Upwork collection department:


**Edited for community guidelines**

Bojan S Moderator Member Since: Mar 9, 2018
5 of 24

Hi Wendy,


I'm sorry for the trouble this may have caused you. A member of our team will reach out to you shortly to assist you with this concern further. 


Thank you for your patience. 

~ Bojan
Active Member
Wendy M Member Since: Jun 11, 2019
6 of 24
Yes, I keep hearing this same thing over and over. The Upwork gets back to me saying I am liable for the fraudulent charges. My treatment by Upwork has been despicable. To make this whole thing more simple it’s like the following:

Let’s say you are a vegetarian. In 2017 you stopped into McDonalds an ordered a salad and paid with credit card. In 2019 a charge shows up on your card for 500 Big Macs. You did not order these Big Macs or receive the Big Macs. You endlessly call McDonalds to tell them the situation. You file for a refund with McDonalds immediately as well as file a dispute with IRREFUTABLE evidence you did not order or receive the Big Macs. McDonalds says “yes we know you did not buy the Big Macs, but too bad you still have to pay. We know we made a mistake but we have no mechanism to correct the mistake. Maybe you should learn to like meat”.
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
7 of 24


You hired a freelancer through Upwork.

That freelancer scammed you by logging time on a contract that you left open for a long time after the work was done.


Upwork took extreme action against that freelancer, by removing her from the platform.


But that freelancer is the one who has the money you paid to her. Upwork doesn't have your money.


You went outside of the Upwork system and you filed a chargeback with your credit card company.


By doing that, you abandoned Upwork's processes. It is Upwork's standard policy to suspend the accounts of users who do that. It is the same policy you would have if you had a comparable business.


I'm sorry that you had a bad experience while using Upwork.


I don't blame you if you are disappointed in what happened. I don't blame you if you think it is unfair.

But all of the Upwork Customer Support representatives you have been dealing with have been following their company's policies to the best of their ability.


Had you continued to work within the Upwork system, the matter might have been escalated to somebody who could help you more in a definitive way. Filing a chargeback may make that less likely.


If you filed a chargeback on the recent charges, and the credit card company issues your money back to you, wouldn't that mean you accomplished your goals? To get the money back that the freelancer was paid for time spent working on somebody else's project?


With the money heading your way now due to the chargeback you filed, Upwork is not going to send you more money. You would end up getting not only a refund, but you would actually make money off of the incident.


Is there a reason that you don't want to simply part ways with Upwork at this point? Rather than hang around while they ask you to pay back the chargeback amount?

Active Member
Wendy M Member Since: Jun 11, 2019
8 of 24
Hourly Payment Protection for Clients

- You can monitor your freelancer's Work Diary

to see work-in-progress snapshots and confirm what work is being
invoiced to you
- If your freelancer logs hours not related to your project you can file
a dispute

the previous week's hours. You will be refunded for any hours that do not
qualify for Hourly Protection

- Upwork Hourly Protection doesn’t apply to bonuses, manual time, or
fixed-price projects. See the Upwork Terms of Service
and Hourly Escrow Instructions
for full terms and

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
9 of 24

Yes, Wendy.


They made a mistake.


A freelancer logged time on a different project.


The Upwork employee who looked at those hours did not judge those screenshots to be a project different than your project. And thus she made a mistake and did not click the button to have those hours refunded to you.


Upwork kicked the freelancer off the platform. You filed a chargeback to get your money back. What else is it that you want Upwork to do?

Active Member
Wendy M Member Since: Jun 11, 2019
10 of 24
A moment ago you chastized me for filing a dispute with my credit card
company? Now you seem fine with this action? I would like like to not
have to dispute this through my credit card company. I would like Upwork
to do the right thing because they made the mistake invoke their own policy
of Hourly Payment Protection. Since Upwork is aware it was their mistake
why are they making me dispute it through my credit card company? I would
like my account immediately put back in good standing, as it deserves.

One last thing is there a reason why you have taken this outside of the
community board? Surely all others who responded to me are interested in
the outcome and your comments to me?

I look forward to your resonce.